Archive for the Etsy Category

Etsy Finds: Tetrad Edition

Posted in Clothes, Etsy, Fashion, Jewelry with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 11, 2014 by vprime

I return to you now at the turn of the tide, or something Gandalf would say. I’ve been consumed with my latest project, Baby Prime. Baby Prime is nearly a year old now, and it’s taken all this time to start getting some of my time and sanity back, but Baby is doing fabulously and I’m still shuffling about, gibbering and shedding hair as per the usual.

April begins a astrological/-nomical phenomena known as a Tetrad. This is a series of four lunar eclipses in a row. Astrologically, eclipses can set off crises in your life in the house in which the eclipse falls. These trials are often painful or stressful yet necessary for growth. So, we’re coming up on a set of four little personal apocalypses. For more about where you can expect your life to explode, see here. Perhaps you may be able to defray the Goddess’ wroth by robing yourself in her protective sigils.* Here are some examples:

bloodmoon pendantThis blood moon pendant by Out of Space Jewelry reflects the image of the darkened eclipse moon. Hang this around your neck in the hopes that in seeing her reflection, the Moon will briefly take pity upon you and confine her ill effects to an easily solved and inexpensive household issue, like running out of laundry soap.

lunar dressThis lunar jersey dress by Shadowplay NYC reminds the universe: “I’m a Moonchild. Do not fuck with me, dark powers.” It’s made of cotton jersey, and so sensible for the upcoming heat of late spring and summer. The dress can be worn several ways, either as a short dress or a long tunic. It’s sewn so that it hangs asymmetrically. I recently got one of these dresses in a different print from Shadowplay, and it fits more like a long tunic. I love their cosmic prints. Try wearing this to your Esbats for an extra moon-boost.

lunar calendarThis stylish lunar calendar by Thorburn Collective will help you keep track of the moon’s phases.

lunar amuletThe Lunar Amulet for Ceremonies of Intention by For Strange Women is a series of perfumes attuned to each new moon of the year. This version comes in a brass locket with faceted onyx representing the dark moon. There are some really stunning perfume lockets in their shop, like this one and this one.

phase earringsFor proper lunar protection, you’ll need silver. These hammered silver moon phase earrings by Aurora Shadow should fit the bill. Moon phases seem to be A Thing right now, from shirts to nails to cellphone covers, and I’m not opposed to this.

pyramid candleIf all else fails, pull out your pyramid of power candle (by Artisan Witchcrafts) and do whatever banishing rituals you need to get your shit back together.

Those are my words of advice. Do with them what you will. And that shall be the whole of the law etcetera etcetera. My hope is that I will return with something more substantive soon. Thank you.

*Disclaimer: I’m not a witch, Wiccan, neopagan or any sort of left-hand-pathfinder. I just really love the trappings and language of the occult, as I’m sure many vaugely Gothy folk do.

Etsy Finds: Non-Lame Skulls Edition

Posted in Clothes, Culture, Decor, Etsy, Fashion, Jewelry with tags , , , , , , , , , on April 17, 2012 by vprime

As difficult as it may be to believe, skulls were once considered reminders of death and emblems against vanity and not just cutesy motifs for an Avril Lavigne-branded sweater. The image of the skull in art traditionally reminds the viewer of inevitable and impending mortality. These Memento Mori tell us, the viewers, that death comes for all. Seems like an incompatible thought to emblazon on disposable consumer goods, though to me, the trend of cute, quaint skulls smacks of our collective attempts to defang mortality. The cute skull is intended to say less to the viewer than it reveals about the wearer. It tells others that you consider yourself edgy or wish to appear mildly threatening without diverging too far from the mainstream of consumer values. Yes, I am including Ed Hardy here, as the rhinestone skull may be the worst offender when it comes to trivializing and kitschifying death. I’m also willing to acknowledge that kitsch is part of the humorous flip-side to Goth’s funereal overtones—“Bela Lugosi’s Dead” was recorded as a joke, after all—and the cute is often a necessary chaser to the morbid. However, I tend not to lean toward this aesthetic of cute skulls, candy witches and swirls of pink in my blacks. By the same token, I’m not about to go all Mortiis and armour myself in the darkest darkety dark of serious darkness. I prefer to walk a line that takes me near the abyss without setting up camp at the bottom. I’ve been thinking of this look as Classical Morbid. It’s part Trad Goth, part Corporate Goth. All that being said, the skull is still a compelling image that is a staple of Gothic fashion.  I’ve found some examples on Etsy that retain something of the heft of the Memento Mori.

Yes, I know what I just said about rhinestone skulls, but this jacket from Urbanhardware transcends the usual rhinestone skull in its wonderfully shaded and detailed execution. The closer the skull to the complexity of the anatomical image, the more visually interesting it becomes. The jacket’s use of velvet and lace are also an elegant touch. I love this sort of “Death is a Dandy” fashion.

Subtlety is key with the understated Goth look I’ve been pursuing lately. I have a tiny silver skull necklace very similar to this one by Etco. A tiny pendant like this can give a surprising flash of your morbid sensibilities without announcing itself too overtly.  Mine is on a fine silver ball-chain. I like wearing it with a quartz pendulum or a tiny silver wax-seal medallion.

This basic white stoneware skull made by Leigh Leigh Pottery would look great on top of a stack of leather-bound books. It’s a higher quality material that won’t remind you of styrofoam Halloween decorations. A basic ceramic figure such as this one also strikes me as less kitschy than a skull candleholder.

There’s no doubt, etchings are classy; just ask dead hottie, Albrecht Durer. This print, available from Tiger House Art, framed in an ornate black baroque frame, would make a great elegant Goth touch to any room. I have this print in my writing/sewing room.

I hope this has demonstrated a few ways to reclaim the skull from irrelevance, etcetera.

Etsy Store Discount for Readers

Posted in Etsy, Jewelry with tags , , , , , on October 28, 2011 by vprime

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I’m looking to get the word out about my Etsy shop by offering 15% off to my readers. Use coupon code LASHES to get the discount.

Hell Bent for Leather

Posted in Clothes, Etsy, Fashion with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on August 18, 2011 by vprime

I just finished another draft of an article on male subcultural styles, so of course I was looking at pictures of Rob Halford and thinking “damn, I don’t wear enough leather.” This is an entirely natural and understandable thought, as it’s hotter than Lucifer’s balls right now and I can’t even keep up with makeup before it all melts off my face. Also, it is only cool enough to wear leather perhaps 3 weeks out of the year here, and I am constantly guilt-tripping over this truly fantastic leather frock coat my husband bought for me in London—which I haven’t even worn yet because it’s usually too hot and also, where the heck am I going that I need to wear a leather frock coat, Transylvania? It just seems far too anticlimactic to haul the thing out and go groceries shopping in it. It won’t be leather weather for a few more months. Regardless, I have leather on my mind and it’s far safer to write about it than shop.

Exhibit A:

Skirt by Jitrois available from Stylebop.com

I really want a leather skirt like this. Just below knee-length, plain black without any lacing or big visible zippers. The length is important, as the look I’d like to achieve is something in the vein of Gothic Schoolmistress or Annie Lennox: Sadistic Event Planner (see Exhibit B), not Professional Groupie or Kellie Bundy. All I can seem to find in a sane price range (less than I paid for my car, please?) are skirts that are too short, too biker-y or fringed. *Shudder* I think for something like this, faux won’t do, as vinyl tends to be thicker, heavier and stiffer than the real thing. Vinyl lacks that magnificent leather smell. Then there is also the possibility of the vinyl peeling off the fabric base, an issue that I hoped to have given up when I stopped buying stretchy PVC goth Lip Service clothes.

Exhibit B:

This is not Annie Lennox, but it fits that 80s power business thing.

Exhibit C:

Annie Black Leather Spats by AudraJean on Etsy.com

I realize these would look ridiculous on me. I’m short and have daikon legs, but damn, these look pretty cool. The option of switching shoes would make these fun to play with. The whole strappy-leather effect reminds me of Aeon Flux, which has probably influenced my mind far too much. An accessory like this is more likely to be yet another item that can really only be worn at clubs or meetings of the Scorpius Appreciation Society, so I may just admire these from afar for a while. After all, I’ve got two English degrees to feed.

Exhibit D:

Leather Harness by Zana Bayne at Zanabayne.com

Gasp! It’s not black! Zana Bayne has a unique take on leather accessories. This harness would be an excellent way to put a plain outfit over the top. Again, it looks like something I picture characters wearing in Aeon Flux (the cartoon, not the bad movie). I sense a thread here. I actually wouldn’t prefer something like this in red. Red is less flexible. There’ s something about all black that demands depth, textures and attention to shape in order to create subtle contrast. Monochrome invites attention to the fine details that always strikes me as much more luxurious than using colors to create that difference.  Over time I’ve come to realize that red and I don’t always get along. I no longer wear red clothing or nail color, but I will do red hair or lipstick. Magenta is a much better choice for me.

Bayne keeps an interesting blog at www.garbagedress.com. Her semi-goth personal style is intriguing and I experience much envy over her boots.

I could continue. I haven’t even touched Demeter Leather fragrance, black leather opera gloves, boots, leather-bound journals, leather bracelets, dresses or jackets. A follow-up post may be required.

Before I vapourize into a cloud of ectoplasm, I do want to say that I am working on a longer, in-depth post on melancholy. I’ve also got so much makeup I want to review, but I don’t want to photograph myself in it because I always come out looking like a nerdy version of Mrs. Swan trying to do deathrock. Thusly:

I am embarrased that I even know who this is.

Picture that with huge glasses and you’re most of the way there. So, maybe I’ll write about my makeup, or not. It’s all up to the ennui now.

 

Futuristic Shoes and Vintage Silk

Posted in Clothes, Etsy, Fashion, Jewelry, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 19, 2011 by vprime

Many changes have come to Prime Manor, including a change of employment for me that takes me away from academic work and a renewed focus on my fiction writing. In the meantime, I’ve gotten some nice things in the mail these past few months that I’d like to share.

Swordmaker shoes by Irregular Choice

The customer service people at Topshop were excellent to me in the wake of the two left boot thing. They sent me a nice refund check which I used to buy these Irregular Choice shoes. I’ll have to get some pictures of myself wearing them. The shoes have an ultracozy blue crushed velvet interior. I haven’t worn them out yet, but I do have concerns about two things: One, the shoes have no grip on the bottom and I have been known to take a dive from time to time. Two, the point of the toe, as you can sort of see in the picture, curves upward. The shoe feels kind of awkward on my foot. I’m hoping wear will even out that curving toe thing. Still, these are a retrofuturist’s dream come true. I’ll wear them to the robot uprising. Visit Irregular Choice here.

Vintage Silk Phoenix Shirt


I found this silk shirt on Etsy. It has a beaded panel that attaches to the front with tiny buttons. The bird appears to be a phoenix. I have been looking for more natural fiber clothing lately since it breathes and stays cooler than synthetics. I have this tucked away for a special occasion. I think I will wear it with a skirt and an obi belt. The sleeves are wonderfully full, giving this a sort of sorceress-Stevie Nicks vibe that I’ve been into lately. Yet the high neck and ruffles are severe and governess-like as well. Visit Verite Vintage on Etsy.

Pass the crystal, spread the tarot. Yeah, I know, this isn’t that Alice. I bought this necklace from BellaLili because I’m wearing a lot of matte black metal right now. I liked that the shape was unexpected and that the crystal in the center keeps it ironically pretty. It’s elegant and weird without being cutesy. I was swayed to purchase this item because it’s a once of a kind creation. As with the other items, I haven’t worn it anywhere yet because I don’t often have places to go. I guess I could just start dressing up for Kitty Prime’s amusement.  BellaLili on Etsy.

Coming soon: My new tattoo, makeup, things to sniff and more things I’ve made.

The Craft: March 8th

Posted in Etsy, Fashion, Jewelry with tags , , , , , , on March 8, 2011 by vprime

Here is a collage of some items I’ve made lately. Most of these are in my Etsy shop: http://www.etsy.com/shop/secretidentity

Oh, one of these pictures is of some chains I was oxidizing with liver of sulfur solution. So that’s why there’s a shot of chain draped over a towel rack. I oxidized a silver bracelet I’d made that I should post pictures of soon. I’m also planning on challenging myself to use up my fabric stash (of which there are several bins full) within the next year, so there may be photos of my own handmade clothes soon. Maybe.

Until next time.

The Dark Futuristic Side of Etsy

Posted in Clothes, Etsy, Fashion with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 5, 2011 by vprime

I like my goth with a side of futurism. But I have issues with the way these two great tastes are usually combined. Cyber goth is a bit too neon and Halloween costume-y for me. If it’s your passion to wear plastic hair and shredded tutus, that’s adequately satisfactory, but not at all a look I would wear. I like industrial or military looks, but I also like a touch of glam and that can be hard to balance with that post-apocalyptic wasteland raider look. If I could look like an evil extra from Farscape that would be ideal. Here are some items I found on Etsy that could be incorporated into a dark futuristic look.

This dress by Masq combines Art Deco with Japanese influences. I like that the body of the dress and the sleeves are different materials. The series of darts at the front are a lovely addition. Darts are tough to do in satin, but these add shape and interest to the front of the dress. I also like the combination of black and blue. This dress is perfect for the space villainess to relax in her destroyer. Just because you spend all day oppressing planetary systems doesn’t mean you can’t look fabulous. Visit Masq Here.

This leather corset belt by Zahira’s Boudoir features some excellent hardware. Add this to the dress above and your cowering minions will soon begin to understand that you want them to find you those plans immediately! The back of the belt is elastic so you can take deep breaths–the better to bellow at incompetent generals and uncooperative rebel fighters. Visit ZahirasBoudoir here.

Plastik Wrap comes pretty close to perfectly embodying my vision of goth meets future. I’ve been pining after these slick opera gloves for some time now. But, alas, as I have no space empire to keep in line I can’t quite justify buying them while pesky annoyances like student loans and food stand in my way. There are several other Plastic Wrap items I’d indulge in if I won the space lottery, including their Harness Dress and their Geisha Dress. Visit Plastik Wrap Here.

Once you’re dressed to oppress, you’ll need some jewelry that ties the whole look together. This silver necklace by Ruonan is alien, organic and rare. The shapes are suggested by coral, but they also remind me of bones. The larger pads at the ends of each piece are brushed matte, while the rest of the necklace retains a polished silver finish. Let your minions know you have great taste. Visit Ruonan here.

Well, cosmonauts, that’s all I’ve got for now.

Until next time.

A Many-Splintered Thing

Posted in beauty, Books, Etsy, Jewelry with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on February 9, 2011 by vprime

I’ll refrain from the obvious Joy Division reference for this Valentine’s Day post. Instead I’ll just borrow a bad pun from Mr. Eldritch. Valentine’s day is an orgy of romantic stereotypes, waxy chocolates and unfelt sentiments. And substituting Lupercalia is already played out. Yeah, if I didn’t look at this holiday with a jaundiced eye, you’d worry. Sometimes I celebrate it, sometimes not, depending on how depleted I feel. I do have plans that I am looking forward to this year, but I’m equally satisfied by staying home and watching a movie. Nonetheless, I do have recommendations should you need dark offerings for that special someone you’ve been cyberstalking.

Hedonist Necklace by Bellalili

This necklace by Bellalili manages to be tough and refined at once. Bellalili’s items combine ornate metal forms with brilliant crystals. I would wear this with anything from a plain black v-neck shirt to a ruffled blouse. It’s big enough to be noticed without crying out for attention. I regularly spy lovelies in Bellalili’s Etsy shop that I admire. Visit Bellalili’s Etsy shop.

Tokyo Milk Tainted Love

Don’t touch me please I cannot stand the way you tease. Tokyo Milk’s Tainted Love has a little less Marc Almond and more vanilla, orchid, white tea and sandalwood. I have Tokyo Milk’s Dead Sexy and wear it often. I haven’t smelled this yet, but it sounds promising. Anything that combines sandalwood and tea is compelling to me. Vanilla is a tricky fragrance note. I can’t stand it in an overly sugary iteration. I’m not sure what has driven the rise of bath and body products that smell like cans of frosting, but that’s the sort of vanilla I avoid. As long as there’s something to dirty up the vanilla a bit, I’m willing to try it. If you haven’t yet smelled the Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab’s Snake Oil, do make sure to sniff this magical and delicious combination of vanilla and patchouli. My hope is that Tainted Love mixes a greenish sandalwood with the fresh tea note and the vanilla is warm and complex rather than sweet. I’d love to hear from anyone who’s tried Tainted Love and can describe it a bit.  Visit Tokyo Milk.

The Picture of Dorian Gray

“The only way to get rid of a temptation is to yield to it. Resist it, and your soul grows sick with longing for the things it has forbidden to itself, with desire for what its monstrous laws have made monstrous and unlawful.”
– Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray. This new Penguin Classics hardcover has a gorgeous cover worthy of the decadent tale within. This black and white volume would look elegant on your shelf or table. Books are the best gifts ever, in my mind; and even better if the book is beautiful to look at. I am now reading Huysmans’ A Rebours which is the book that turns Dorian from a sweet boy into a lovely monster. To give your love an interesting reading experience, pair this with the highly underrated Dorian by Will Self.  Buy books at Amazon.com

That concludes my Valentine’s suggestions. No flowers, candy or stuffed animals. These gifts are appropriate whether the object of your desire is male, female or other.

Until next time.

Obsessions: End of Winter Edition

Posted in Clothes, Etsy, Fashion on February 1, 2011 by vprime

Now we enter the wasteland of Spring fashion, when black is replaced by its dowdy cousin navy* and every pair of pants for sale loses three inches from the hem. My situation is complicated by living in a subtropical inferno. Once the new year turns, I know I can skip clothes shopping until September, as dark colors and heavier fabrics are replaced by icks like gingham and horrid colors like coral and yellow. But, there are a few things my consumerist eye is still on, and here they are:

Bauhaus T-Shirt

Ebay used to be a fashion wonderland. I found so many excellent things there when it was more of a massive garage sale rather than the internet equivalent of a shop that moves into a dead storefront in the mall and don’t even bother to put up signage. I still have an excellent pair of Destroy boots and several vintage silver rings I found on late night scrounges through Ebay. Halfway decent t-shirts can still be found here. I’m considering a large shirt like this to alter, perhaps by adding darts and an exposed zipper up the back. I’m always wary of Beefy Ts, though. They tend to fade into unlikely colors. Black fabric rarely transitions into a true neutral grey. Often, there’s a blue or green undertone that comes up as the garment fades.  I don’t like my blacks turning olive.

Gabriella Rocha Heagany

I spent late December in Europe and was consumed by jealousy for all the sleek booted feet that I saw there. Upon returning from London and Berlin, I vowed to convert entirely to black ankle boots and never wear plain flats again.  I haven’t actually taken any action on that, but I think these boots might be a good start. The low heel and plain styling would make these transition easily between looks. Suede can be a problem, though. It begins to look shabby very quickly. Like many a 90s kid, I grew up in Doc Martens, and as such never developed much of a tolerance for heels. I can wear them for short spans of time, but anything higher than two inches essentially ensures I’ll spend most of the night sitting.  I have also been looking at these:

Dirty Laundry Lois

A more military look, less multipurpose, but the combination of materials make these a bit different. These boots have a more old-fashioned look. I think it’s the perforations. The Gabriella Rocha boots are available from Zappos.com. See the Dirty Laundry boots at Shoes.com.

Illamasqua Scorn

Illamasqua is so amazing. This British makeup brand not only creates some of the most inventive makeup, they have also hired Dave Vanian as a consultant. Black lipstick is part of their regular collection. I find black lipstick no longer in my repertoire now that I’m over thirty.  I wish I had better pictures of this varnish. It’s not just black, it has a semi-matte finish that looks like leather or rubber. I can’t wait to try this out.Visit Illamasqua here.

Gradient Silk Scarf by Kteis

Goth is really a wintertime style. Straw hats and shorts are Just. Not. Goth. My collection of scarves has to hibernate throughout the long hot months. In the meantime, prime vampire-attracting realty is being exposed to the sun every day. This silk scarf looks like just the thing to maintain coverage while avoiding heatstroke. It has a dark-to-light gradient dye, is made of breathable silk and has a wicked blackletter K monogram. I regularly lust after the handpainted silks in Kteis’ Etsy shop. See her lovely items here.

*If you doubt me about navy’s inferiority to black just note that ninjas and vampires wear black. Who wears navy? Security guards and metermaids? Case closed.

The Dark Side of Etsy

Posted in Etsy, Fashion on December 15, 2010 by vprime
I love Etsy for the unique items available there. Also, you can shop without leaving your gloomy manse, which is always a plus in my book of shadows. Here are just a few dark fashion finds.

Bloodmilk makes the kind of jewelry that looks like it ought to be enchanted or cursed. This ring uses a slab of oxidized silver in place of a jewel. The bird claw details add a surreal and morbid touch. This is the sort of ring that belongs on the finger of a fairy tale witch. Bloodmilk’s other designs feature tiny Ouija board planchettes in sterling silver, curved snake rib bone bangles, intricately detailed owl claws cast in blackened silver. Bloodmilk’s manifesto is worth reading for her explanation of how she combines “the beautiful with the bizarre.”  Visit Bloodmilk’s Etsy shop.

Lydia Sparrow Claw Cocktail Ring

Lydia Sparrow Claw Cocktail Ring

Bondage chic comes and goes, and it seems the time is now if you’ve been craving hardcore footwear tricked out with enough spikes to make Mad Max think twice. Blame/thank Lady Gaga perhaps. I don’t listen to her, but I do love the look of these repurposed shoes by Dinofleur. These black ankle booties bristling with spikes look viciously elegant. There is a look-but-don’t-touch feel to spiked footwear. Dinofleur also makes spiked flats. Take care when crossing your legs. Visit Dinofleur’s Etsy shop.

Spiked Heel Ankle Boots

 

A little handheld clutch is indisputably elegant. It’s not often that I can pull off a tiny purse. It takes assurance that all you’ll need this evening is another slick of black lipstick and a dab of powder. I keep notebooks, pens, perfume, three types of eyeliner and etcetera in my bag, so I can’t often compress into a tiny minimalist bag. This clutch by TianaCHE is making me reconsider that. I love the uneven texture and subtle sheet of nubby duipioni silk. The contrast of luxe silk and metal hardware makes this clutch gorgeous. It has a blood red satin lining that adds that extra goth chic mystique and makes it easier to find your black eyeliner. Visit TianaCHE’s Etsy shop.

Silver Skull Clutch